My heart hit the floor when my doctor gave me the news. Cancer. The growth that was gradually overtaking the side of my neck was actually both rare and malignant. I felt lost. But soon, I gathered up my courage, looked myself in the mirror, and decided that I had to step up and fight. Then, just as I was getting ready to do whatever it took to beat my cancer, my whole tumor got sheared off in a subway turnstile.
It happened in an instant. I had become completely invested in winning my battle against cancer. I called my friends and family. I started eating better. I set up a GoFundMe campaign that was getting some real traction. Then, right as I was about to start my treatment, the darn thing got clipped clean off while I was entering a subway.
I remember that I was running to catch the 6 train when I felt something catch my neck. I heard a sort of popping sound, and when I looked down, I almost didn’t believe my eyes. The turnstile had ripped the tumor right off and sent it skittering several feet off the platform and onto the tracks. One lady had to step out of the way so it didn’t hit her. When I checked out my neck, I felt a big patch of raw flesh—but no cancer to be seen.
In the days leading up to that moment, I had been prepared for the fight of my life. I was ready to do my best to face my future, regardless of what it brought, with optimism, grace, and determination. But according to my oncologist, I’m now 100 percent cancer-free. It looks like that turnstile really managed to dig in there and rip all of the cancer out. So I’m all good, I guess.
What did I learn from my experience? Well, if my cancer hadn’t got lopped off in that subway station, I think that my doctors would have done whatever it took to get me healthy again. I’m sure I would have been moved by the support from my friends and family members. And I’m positive that I would have learned a lot about myself in the process. Sure, it may have taken getting my tumor severed by an old turnstile to make it happen, but I’m finally ready to get back to what’s important: living.